Dolphins Media Opportunity
BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA - OCTOBER 27: Wayne Bennett poses for a photo with the revealing of the Dolphins Heritage jersey and a new sponsor in Kings Adventure during a Dolphins NRL press conference at Suncorp Stadium on October 27, 2021 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images)

Dolphins head coach Wayne Bennett has confirmed the club's interest in Maroons star Cameron Munster, believing the new team could snare the five-eighth when his contract expires - if not sooner.

Since the NRL announced the induction of the competition's 17th team late last year, there have been names thrown around more than anyone else's, namely Kalyn Ponga and Cameron Munster. Ponga has already spurned their interest in order to re-sign long-term with Newcastle, but the chatter of Munster's move north still hasn't ceased.

Currently under contract with the Melbourne Storm until the end of 2024, it hasn't stopped Bennett from hoping the Wally Lewis medallist will make the move to Queensland 12 months earlier.

“He’s part of the long-term view, absolutely he is. If we don’t get him in 2023 which we believe we will, certainly 2024 is on the table for us and hopefully it’s on the table for him" Bennett told SEN on Friday.

“We’ve been very deliberate, we just haven’t wasted our money on guys we don’t we don’t think are going to be a good fit for our club.

"We’ve been patient and that’s where it’s at and that’s where it’ll stay. We’ve still got a good amount of money in the salary cap to buy quality players."

As expected, the Storm would be incredibly reluctant to release Munster without compensation, having already lost Felise Kaufusi and the Bromwich brothers to the Dolphins, as well as Brandon Smith to the tri colours for 2023 onwards.

It's been reported the Dolphins are offering a long-term deal north of the seven figure mark per season, while the Storm are shaping up to offer the international a reduced deal, potentially forcing Munster's hand for an early exit.

Munster isn't expected to make a call until late in the season, potentially throwing a spanner in the works for Bennett, who needs to fill a 30-man roster before November 1, and won't be able to leave a million dollars sitting in the cap for a rainy day.